What is the Welsh Baccalaureate?
The central focus of the Welsh Baccalaureate at Key Stage 4 is to provide a vehicle for 14-16 year olds to consolidate and develop essential and employability skills. The qualification will help learners to prepare for their future by developing skills, attributes and behaviours valued by post-16 educators and potential employers. The emphasis in the Welsh Baccalaureate is on applied learning i.e. acquiring and applying a range of transferable skills. Learners will develop skills in the context of purposeful tasks and appropriate knowledge and understanding. The Welsh Baccalaureate will encourage the learner to value skills development as a key aspect of education and life-long learning. Offering a learning experience relevant to the needs and demands of the workplace will develop learners’ confidence, drive and initiative, preparing them to enter, succeed and progress in the world of work.
Through the Welsh Baccalaureate learners will raise their skills levels and confidence, enabling and empowering them to take their place as responsible and active citizens within a diverse society. Alongside and through the development of skills, the Welsh Baccalaureate provides learners with the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding of society, the community in which they live and an awareness of global issues, events and perspectives.
The Welsh Baccalaureate is based on a Skills Challenge Certificate alongside Supporting Qualifications. The requirements of both the Skills Challenge Certificate and Supporting Qualifications must be met in order to achieve the overarching Welsh Baccalaureate. The Skills Challenge Certificate consists of four components which are followed by all learners:
- Individual Project
- Enterprise and Employability Challenge
- Global Citizenship Challenge
- Community Challenge
The combined outcomes of the four components will determine whether the Skills Challenge Certificate is awarded at National or Foundation level.
The Supporting Qualifications include two mandatory GCSEs of English Language or Welsh Language together with Mathematics-Numeracy or Mathematics. A further three GCSEs are also required, of which two may be of equivalent qualifications.
To meet the National Welsh Baccalaureate requirements all five of the Supporting Qualifications must be achieved at grades A*-C. Similarly, for the Foundation Welsh Baccalaureate the Supporting Qualifications must be achieved at grades A*-G.
The following diagram illustrates the routes towards achievement of the Welsh Baccalaureate at Key Stage 4.